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About Us
Shining Light On The Spectrum

As many of you know, the rate of diagnosed cases of Autism has been rising and continues to rise. When the Founder's son was diagnosed in 2002, there was one child with Autism in every 500. As of March 2014, there is one child with Autism in every 68. These are staggering statistics that are climbing exponentially with each census report. As a community, we need to look at deeply into the ever-growing new world.

Our Board

Our board is comprised of parents, an educator, case manager, and community leaders who are acutely aware of the challenges and joys of caring for a child on the autism spectrum.

Board Member & Founder: Stephanie Lay
Stephanie is a single mother of a 16 year old with severe Autism. She has fought for quality care for her son, along with advocating for the use of medical marijuana to help with his severe self-injurious behaviors (SIBs). She has worked alongside DHHS Behavioral Health Department to improve the quality of services for children and families impacted by Autism, and is on the Advisory Board for APS Healthcare. This foundations has been a dream of hers for many years.

Board Member: Diane Russell
Diane serves the people of Portland, Maine in the Maine State House of Representatives. She is an unapologetically working-class populist progressive who has been one of the nation's clearest state political voices for the responsible end to marijuana prohibition. She often partners with organizations across the country to oppose anti-choice and anti-voting movements.


President: Andrea Myhaver
Andrea works for MaineHealth as a Project Manager in Information Services. She comes to SPECIAL with several years of nonprofit experience, most recently serving as the President of the Munjoy Hill Neighborhood Organization from 2011-2015. On the home front, she has advocated for her own son on issues of special education within the school system.

Treasurer: Danielle Whitehouse



Our hope is to reach many families and help them to understand their rights of education, medication, therapies and connect them to sources for tangible help, as needed.

We have a collection of experience, and are interested in building up a network of parents, educators, caregivers, and other community members who are available to be a resource to each other. Please let us know how you would like to participate or how we can help!

To reach the SPECIAL Foundation for Autism:
P.O. Box 10896
Portland, ME 04104
Phone: (207) 420-5730
E-mail: specialfoundationforautism@yahoo.com